Thanks for not asking about my biggest weakness...
November 19, 2012 10:50 AM   Subscribe

Group-phone-interview thank-you protocol: I had a 15-minute phone interview for a job I'm still very interested in. Five people interviewed me; each asked 1-2 questions. I have everyone's e-mail address. Can I just send one e-mail that says "Dear A, B, C, D, and E," to everyone, thanking them for their time and reiterating why I'd be a good candidate, and be done with it? Or do I have to send five individual e-mails? Most of the questions were so generic ("Where do you see yourself in 3-5 years?" OH GOD) that I don't have much to add to what I already said and I don't remember who asked what.
posted by jabes to Work & Money (13 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
Best answer: Not sure there's one right answer, but in a similar situation, I emailed everyone as a group. I thought they might discuss me (and the other candidate) as a group, so it'd be better for everyone to see the same thank-you note. And anecdotally, I'm told the other candidate did not send a thank-you email/letter at all, and they chose me for the job partly because I did send one.
posted by homelystar at 10:57 AM on November 19, 2012

I think one email is perfectly fine. Especially if the interview was 15 minutes in total.
posted by halseyaa at 10:58 AM on November 19, 2012

Best answer: If you can send something distinct to each person, do that.

If you can't, then send one note and include everyone. Whatever you do, do not send everyone a separate, identical note. They'll notice and it'll look sloppy.
posted by cranberry_nut at 10:59 AM on November 19, 2012 [1 favorite]

One email is fine, but individual emails are better. Make sure you close and ask for an offer.
posted by bfranklin at 11:04 AM on November 19, 2012

One email to all. Keep it short, and non-gushy and non-pushy. Above all, send the email (quickly) and make no further contact attempts until you hear from them, one way or the other.

And good luck!
posted by Wordshore at 11:04 AM on November 19, 2012

Given the informal nature of the interview, I think you can be forgiven for sending a blanket email, rather than struggling to remember who asked what. If you can, make a little joke like: "I've never had a group interview via conference call, but now I can cross it off my bucket list." Finish up by asking for the job,"It's easy to see that you have a nice commeraderie at XYZ company and I'd love to be part of the team."
posted by Ruthless Bunny at 11:05 AM on November 19, 2012

Response by poster: Thanks, y'all! One and done, mission accomplished. They told me in the phone interview that they'll be doing an in-person round in a couple weeks with finalists. Hoping some of homelystar's luck rubs off on me.
posted by jabes at 11:12 AM on November 19, 2012

When I have sat on hiring committees, I never cared about this stuff, but maybe that is just me.
posted by thelonius at 11:28 AM on November 19, 2012

If you sent me an individual email, I wouldn't know if you'd sent something to others, so I'd forward it to everyone else. The assumption that they're working as a team sounds right, and it's less work for everyone if you treat them like one. If you do have something more personal to say to some individual ("I remembered the magazine article that you and I were discussing on the way out") you could follow up with an individual email to them on that.
posted by salvia at 11:52 AM on November 19, 2012 [1 favorite]

My philosophy is that your time and effort is valuable, too, so a group email saves you effort and appears the same on their end.
posted by rhizome at 12:30 PM on November 19, 2012

I do a few interviews a month and never get emailed directly by candidates. If they did then I would find it strange and worry they were trying to get some sort of advantage - especially if I'd only asked them a single question on the phone. I'm in the UK - perhaps it's different here?
posted by JonB at 1:12 PM on November 19, 2012

Response by poster: JonB - I think it's pretty standard in the US to send thank you notes after interviews, either real notes or via e-mail. I do it when I remember to and have gotten job offers after sending thank you's.

I got a reply from one of the people I emailed, he thanked me for the note and cc'd the other four people who interviewed me, so I think treating it as a team interview was the right way to go. Thanks again everyone!
posted by jabes at 2:08 PM on November 19, 2012

One word of caution: I recently sat on a hiring committee, and we had one person interview by phone. She did send us thank you notes (individually; I have no idea if they were identical). Turns out her daughter and I share a first name, so for the past several weeks I've been getting occasional emails meant for her. (I know, stupid auto-complete, right?)

It's nothing offensive or anything, but it's awkward because she wasn't chosen for a second interview.

So what I'm saying, I guess, is make sure that you don't mistakenly send these people additional emails if your email client automatically completes addresses.
posted by mudpuppie at 5:02 PM on November 19, 2012

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